Lusaka businessman and aspiring candidate for the position of president for PF, Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba, GBM, has described as disastrous the agricultural policy of the government of President Hakainde Hichilema.
Citing the Farmer Input Support Program, FISP, Mr. Mwamba says some councilors are already reporting instances in which a whole cooperative is being given a single pack which is more of a token than substance.
Mr. Mwamba has called on councilors, Members of Parliament, civil society, and the media to monitor closely the implementation of the agricultural policy under the UPND government and avoid relying on political pronouncements.
“Policy delivery is more important than policy pronouncements”, the seasoned politician with experience in government says. He adds, “Policy delivery is about experiences of potential beneficiaries and targets of the policy in question”.
One video that has gone viral features a councilor from one of the wards in Mufumbwe district who sums up the frustrations of the people in his area. He says after being encouraged to form cooperatives by government, people are shocked and angry that they are being given one pack.
“Where would this one pack take them”, the councilor asks.
Mr. Mwamba has expressed fear that the concerns raised in Mufumbwe may be a microcosm of what is happening across the country. He says, “in view of the strategic importance of government support to farmers and food security, monitoring the implementation and delivery of policy in the agricultural sector must be embarked upon speedily”.
He has warned Zambians against taking Mr. Hichilema by his word saying, “the man is full of self-praise and obsessed with attention-seeking”, adding, “when you get onto the ground, the picture is totally different”.
Mr. Mwamba says councilors, MPs, civil society, and the media owe it to the Zambian people to monitor the implementation and delivery of public policy and report without fear or favor any matters of concern associated with the process.
He says the phenomenon of praise-singing that has reached new levels under the UPND government must be countered with the truth so that wrongs are corrected in real time and failure of policy is avoided.